Everything you ever wanted to know about how to store ghee
In India, ghee has been loved and used for literally millennia. Even after 5,000 years of use, it’s still a staple in most diets throughout the subcontinent. However, for many here in the west, ghee is kind of a new food. With that in mind, we can’t take for granted that everyone knows how to store ghee to make sure it keeps for as long as possible before going rancid. Which is why we’ve created this guide.
If you’ve newly discovered ghee and aren’t quite sure where to keep it in the kitchen, or if you’ve enjoyed ghee for years and are interested in purchasing larger containers, we’re here to help you make sure that your ghee stays as fresh and delicious as the day you bought it!
Why love ghee
There are plenty of reasons that explain ghee’s staying power in Indian diets as well as the popularity it has been gaining in recent decades in the west. Ghee has a delectable flavor, high smoke point, long shelf-life, and associated health benefits—it’s so easy to love ghee!
Much of what we love about ghee comes as the result of the clarifying process that turns butter into ghee. As butter (in the case of Full Moon Ghee, fresh, locally-sourced butter from grass-fed cows) is simmered down, the milk solids—proteins and sugars—are removed, as is excess water. What’s left is a creamy, golden, delicately nutty/sweet, shelf-stable, versatile oil that can be spread on breads, blended in smoothies, baked in treats, or sauteed with veggies and meats. The possible uses are really endless!
How to store ghee to get the most out of it
There are three ways ghee can be stored: in a cabinet, in the refrigerator, or in the freezer. Let’s explore each of these locations a bit closer.
An unopened, sealed jar of ghee can keep at room temperature for up to nine months in a kitchen cabinet. Once the jar is opened, room-temp ghee will stay fresh for up to six months. The key to keeping ghee for this long on a shelf is to store it in a dark place, away from sunlight, and to ensure that the location is not too hot or humid. It’s really quite important to keep moisture out of the ghee jar, as water will turn the ghee rancid very quickly.
An opened jar of ghee will stay good in a fridge for up to a year! Again, assuming you are able to keep the moisture out. The only downside here is that refrigerated ghee solidifies making it a bit harder to use. If you do want to store your ghee in the fridge, but want to avoid having to chip away at a hard block of ghee every time you want to use it, you’ll just have to remember to let it soften for a couple of hours on a countertop beforehand.
It is entirely possible to freeze ghee for at least a year, and perhaps longer. We recommend divvying up a large quantity into smaller portions (perhaps a month’s worth) and double wrapping it to prevent freezer burn. And don’t forget to label and date each container!
How to tell if the ghee’s gone bad
We can certainly do our best to store ghee in the most optimal environment and use it up before it goes bad, but there are occasions where a jar disappears to the back of a cabinet for a little too long, or maybe you’ve just indulged in a few weeks of take-out (hey, we’re all trying to support our local restaurants here!).
If you do uncover a long-lost jar of ghee and want to know if it’s ok to eat, the good news is that it’s really pretty easy to tell if ghee has gone rancid. It won’t spoil like butter (remember, no water), but the flavor and smell will turn from nutty/sweet to sour. Also, check the best-by date. That’s always a pretty good indicator of shelf-life.
Give the gift of ghee
Wanna gift some ghee? If you have a friend who you think would love ghee as much as you do, or you already know that they do, you can choose from our selection of boxes and have it sent directly to your friend’s doorstep. If you wish to have a note sent along with them, just drop us a line with your order.